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Explore the latest key technologies and trends at Hannover Messe this year

06 April 2018

Every year, the industrial world gathers in Hannover, Germany for five days to explore the latest key technologies and trends at Hannover Messe. Averaging some 200,000 trade visitors and over 5,000 exhibitors, the show typically generates around 5.6 million business-to-business contacts. But the numbers are only part of the picture.

With Hannover Messe 2018 set to take place from 23 to 27 April, the most notable themes will be Industry 4.0, Integrated Energy, Smart Supply, Predictive Maintenance, Cobots, Lightweight Construction and Digital Twinning. A new addition to this year is the co-staging of CeMAT with Hannover Messe, bringing intralogistics to the agenda. Together, the two shows will provide a 360° perspective on the interrelationships between the trends of Industry 4.0 and Logistics 4.0.   

As is fitting for a key industry summit, Hannover Messe is always well supported by political VIPs, including Germany’s Chancellor, Angela Merkel, who traditionally opens the show in the company of the head of state of the participating Partner Country. In 2018, this will be Mexico which will have the opportunity to present its new technologies, investment opportunities, innovative growth strategies and research projects to the movers and shakers of global industry. Mexico and its exhibitors will be presenting on topics which will highlight the country as an innovative and open partner and an attractive place to do business. The stated aims of Mexico’s government include putting in place the strategies and infrastructure necessary for a successful Fourth Industrial Revolution. Mexico also intends to use Hannover Messe to strengthen and advance its international trade relations and, among other things, to further its efforts to secure a free trade agreement with the European Union.

Global industry’s platform for business and political dialogue

The growing convergence of automation and energy technology, intralogistics, IT platforms and artificial intelligence is driving the digital transformation of industry ever onwards and upwards. Hannover Messe 2018 is dedicated to this trend – as signalled by its lead theme, ‘Integrated Industry – Connect & Collaborate’. “Hannover Messe is the place to go to experience the rapid rise of Industry 4.0 and its consequences first-hand,” commented Marc Siemering, Global Director at Deutsche Messe. “Hannover sets the pace for Industry 4.0. It is the only place where you can get an overview of the digital transformation of industry in its entirety.”

The show attracts many decision makers from business and government due to its close association with Industry 4.0. These visitors prefer to get their information about the digitisation of production and energy systems directly from an event where they can see the current state of the art and attend forums and conferences to get their bearings for the future. Many countries have their own assistance programmes for digitisation initiatives, but at Hannover Messe it is possible to compare these digitisation strategies and approaches on a global scale. 

Last year, about 60 percent of exhibitors came from outside of Germany – from 70 countries. On the visitor front, the show is attended by managers of small and medium companies as well as CEOs of global corporations such as Apple, Foxconn, Microsoft and Volkswagen. About 70 percent of the visitors are key decision-makers, and some 50 percent of them are actively scouting for new suppliers. What’s more, the average Hannover Messe visitor controls a capital spending budget of 550,000 euros. 

Robotics, eMobility, intralogistics and everything else in between

Hannover Messe’s automation-themed displays will have a strong focus on robotics, as robot manufacturers, system integrators and providers of gripper systems step up to showcase their Smart Factory solutions. Their presence reflects the integral role of robots and automated guided vehicles in today’s modern manufacturing landscape. It is a landscape in which robotics and automation are constantly breaking new ground in human-machine collaboration. Hannover Messe 2018 will also have a new display area devoted to innovative electric mobility and transportation solutions. Titled ‘Electric Transportation Systems’, the display area deals both with electric vehicles and the necessary supporting infrastructure, which itself needs to be integrated into tomorrow’s transformed, sustainable energy systems. 

From 23 to 27 April 2018, the Hannover Exhibition Centre will be fully booked and abuzz as Hannover Messe and CeMAT team up to present the inner workings of tomorrow’s factories and the key role intralogistics will play in them. Hannover Messe comprises more than 1,000 conferences and forums addressing all of the major trends sweeping modern industry: Industry 4.0, the Internet of Things, digital transformation, cyber security, smart grids and decentralised energy systems. It will also feature events such as Tec2You, Job & Career and WoMenPower, which encourage young people to pursue studies in engineering and technology and offer professionals career advice and guidance. 

Industry demand for startups and the solutions they produce is immense and growing all the time. Hannover Messe’s solution for matching this demand with supply is Young Tech Enterprises, located in Hall 3. Young Tech Enterprises is a central hub that facilitates dialogue between startups and startup networks, accelerators and business development agencies. The showcase features a central forum, pitching and matchmaking events, and workshops. Participants will benefit from proximity to the startups and business development organisations at Research & Technology in Hall 2 as well as investors at the Global Business & Markets platform in Hall 3.

Finally, the Hermes Award will be offered for the 15th time – the competition for which is open to companies and institutions who are exhibiting their innovative products or solutions at Hannover Messe for the first time. The entries in question must have already undergone industrial trials and/or be in industrial use as well as being highly innovative in terms of their technological and economic benefits in actual implementation. All of the companies nominated for the award will be introduced at the Hannover Messe 2018 Opening Ceremony on 22 April, and will also be featured at a special display within the Research & Technology fair in Hall 2.

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